Parliamentary investigators in Berlin have begun to hear evidence from the central witness in an alleged CIA abduction scandal.Lawyers for the man claim that their client was kidnapped by the CIA with the full knowledge of Germany’s Intelligence Agency. Khaled al-Masri is a German citizen of Lebanese descent. He claims he was detained on the Serbian-Macedonian border on suspicion of terrorist activities by the CIA and held for five months in an Afghan jail. Al Masri says the BND, which is Germany’s secret service, knew he was being held. Hans-Christian Stroebele, who is the deputy leader of the Green party, says there are no clues that the German authorities were actively involved in the kidnapping. The question is when they were informed about it. It is in order to answer that question that the parliamentary probe was launched. The BND claims that it first heard of the abduction after al-Masri was released in May 2004. But a technician for the BND says he found out about it earlier that year and reported it to the German Foreign Ministry.
Witness testifies in German CIA abduction probe